Kismetic Mix 38 – Word Aversion Edition – It’s About to Get Really Moist Up in Here

•April 7, 2013 • Leave a Comment

A mix inspired by a very funny story in Slate on word aversion, that curious phenomenon where a seemingly innocent word provokes disgust and revulsion. Three of the words on the playlist make sense for what they actually represent: vomit, puke and poo. But the others are examples of true word aversion: Goose pimples, pugilist, cream, pulp, and the king of them all, moist.

KM 38 Playlist

1 Fletcher Henderson – Goose Pimples

2 Prince and the New Power Generation – Cream

3 Dinosaur Jr. – Puke + Cry

4 MF Doom – Poo-Putt Platter

5 June of 44 – Shadow Pugilist

6 Girls – Vomit

7 Nirvana – Moist Vagina

8 Pulp – Sunrise

Kismetic Mix 37 – Wildcat Wipe-Out Edition – Through the Eyes of Birds

•March 1, 2013 • Leave a Comment

Izzy, our tortoiseshell, disappeared for three and a half weeks in December. She flew the coop right before the first major snow of the year. We were convinced we would never see her again and even began talking about adopting a new cat. “Perhaps, a new cat,” we said to ourselves, “will be nicer to Stella.” Stella’s our younger cat. Izzy had a nasty habit, like many felines, of being passive-aggressive to her housemate. Izzy could be a bitch but she was our bitch.

Fortunately, Izzy made her way back home, none the worse for wear and tear. We suspect she had briefly been taken in by an unknown neighbor and then made her escape at the first opportunity.

In any case, shortly after her return, we saw this article in the Times reconfirming what cat lovers already know: That we live with wild, crazy-eyed killers who will stop at nothing to satisfy their hard-wired predatory ways.

KM 37 Playlist

1 The Rolling Stones – Stray Cat Blues

2 Eartha Kitt – I Wanna Be Evil

3 Retribution Gospel Choir – Easy Prey

4 Howlin’ Wolf – Killing Floor

5 Johnny Cash – Mean Eyed Cat

6 Meiko Keji – The Flower of Carnage

7 Deep Purple – Highway Star

8 Mighty Sparrow – Sparrow Dead

Kismetic Mix 36 – Heart-Shaped Mix Edition – Till the Wheels Come Off

•February 14, 2013 • Leave a Comment

I’ve seen a lot of red sweaters, red socks, red ties, red stockings around the office today. I’m wearing tan pants, a purple shirt, black socks and a sneer on my face at all the Valentine’s Day lovers. I’m not a Valentine’s Day lover; I do this shit 365 days a year, dammit!

This one, as most of them are, is for you, Laura.

KM 36 Playlist 27:40

1 Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers – Here Comes My Girl

2 Bob Dylan – To Be Alone With You

3 The Beatles – I’m Happy Just to Dance With You

4 Thalia Zedek – Dance Me to the End of Love

5 Kiss – I Was Made for Lovin’ You

6 Tom Waits – Picture in a Frame

7 Big Star – I’m in Love With a Girl

8 The Magnetic Fields – The Way You Say Goodnight

Kismetic Mix 35 – Double Pneumonia Edition – Lungs Are Mourning

•February 8, 2013 • Leave a Comment

Rough winter. Two bouts with pneumonia, the second one a double shot in both lungs. So yeah, I made a mix about it. I have a checkered health history but I always bounce back. Sometimes I get bounced from one illness to another, it’s true, but never for very long. I’m still here and I don’t plan on going anywhere for a while.

And every situation I find myself in seems to warrant some kind of soundtrack. It’s just the way my brain works.

KM 35 Playlist 32:15

1 Björk – Pneumonia

2 Death Grips – Hacker

3 Metric – Sick Muse

4 Neko Case – Fever

5 Run-D.M.C. – You Be Illin’

6 Bonnie “Prince” Billy – Cursed Sleep

7 Cobras – Restless

8 Tom Waits – Misery Is the River of the World

Kismetic Mix 34 – Ladies of the 80’s vs Ladies in Their 80’s Edition – It’s the Woman That Gets Some

•January 10, 2013 • Leave a Comment

This turned out to be a bit of a challenge. The original intention was to find 8 female musicians in their 80’s who are still recording and/or performing. Turned out to be a tall order. Yoko will be 80 next month and is maintaining her status as elder stateswoman of the hipsterati; Omara still croons live at 82; Loretta has had a late career renaissance, no doubt aided by the torrid love affair she had with Jack White, until he dumped her and took up with Wanda Jackson. Who’s next, Jack? (Just kidding! But that was weird, right?) As for Abbe, she’s still alive, but I can’t find any information that she’s still performing.

After that I was stuck. Plenty of women in their 6o’s and 70’s are still thriving artistically. But the 80’s? I had painted myself into a corner. I could have gone with ladies who would have been at least 80 if they were still alive but that felt like a cop-out. Laura and Minnie came to the rescue! They simply suggested a combo platter of ladies in their 80’s and ladies of the 80’s. And whoop! Here it is!

KM 34 Playlist 29:52

1 Queen Latifah feat. Monie Love – Ladies First

2 Yoko Ono feat. Blow Up – Everyman…Everywoman

3 Sinéad O’Connor – Just Like U Said It Would B

4 Omara Portuondo – Amame Como Soy

5 Linda Thompson – Walking on a Wire

6 Loretta Lynn – Van Lear Rose

7 Pretenders – Tattooed Love Boys

8 Abbe Lane w/ Tito Puente and His Orchestra – Pan, Amor y Cha Cha Cha

Kismetic Mix 33 – Fiscal Cliff Edition – Land Out on the Ice

•December 27, 2012 • Leave a Comment

Am I worried that the government is looking more and more as if it’s going to go over the so-called “fiscal cliff”? Yes and no. Of course, I don’t want my taxes to go up but if it means putting the spotlight of blame on radical Republicans, then so be it. The obstacles they keep erecting are dragging this country down and they need to be called on it. Even diehard conservatives like William Kristol admit that the world won’t end if the rich pay more income tax. The President should stick to his guns. There may be some hurt in the short term but it will be worth it to witness the continuing implosion of the current Republican party.

KM 33 Playlist 37:55

1 Gillian Welch – Ruination Day, Pt. 2

2 Interpol – Obstacle 1

3 Sébastian Schuller – Ride Along the Cliff

4 Low – On the Edge Of

5 Fela Kuti – No Agreement

6 Emily Haines & The Soft Skeleton – Crowd Surf Off a Cliff

7 Electric Light Orchestra – Showdown

8 Amadou & Mariam – Politic Amagni

Kismetic Mix 32 – Baltimore Edition – I Kinda Like the Streets of Baltimore

•December 19, 2012 • 1 Comment

I recently read an interview of David Simon in Reason Magazine and naturally it got me thinking about the city of Baltimore. Simon is the creator of Tremé which chronicles the fall and rise of New Orleans, post-Katrina. Laura and I love Tremé.  The depictions of the cultural struggle in finding the balance between reinventing New Orleans and returning it to its former glory are riveting.

But it’s Baltimore that put Simon on the map. We’re fans of Homicide and The Corner. The Wire is his masterpiece. The storytelling is intricate and layered, there’s no moralizing, and it’s populated with all kinds of memorable characters and situations: Bunk and McNulty and the power of a single word as they investigate a crime scene, Omar strolling through the hood to pick up his favorite cereal, Bubbles coming to grips with the death of Sherrod. The writing and language are so rich that Laura and I would watch with subtitles to catch every detail.

The city itself is a character in the show. The rowhouses, the docks, the streets, the newsrooms, the neighborhood schools: the entire city is a living, breathing thing. This mix is for Charm City.

KM 32 Playlist 27:47

1 The Jayhawks – The Baltimore Sun

2 Animal Collective – Loch Raven

3 The Frankie Trumbauer Orchestra feat. Bix Beiderbecke – The Baltimore (no personnel listings here, as well; Beiderbecke is featured on cornet; Trumbauer was a noted bandleader and alto and tenor saxophonist of the 1920’s and 30’s)

4 Gram Parsons – Streets of Baltimore

5 Chick Webb and His Orchestra – Stompin’ at the Savoy (Webb, born in Baltimore, led his band on the drums; the music, credited to Webb, Benny Goodman, and Edgar Sampson, is Sampson’s song. Sampson, Webb’s saxophonist, wrote and arranged the music for Webb’s band)

6 The Cars – Dangerous Type (Ric Ocasek is a Bawlmer native)

7 Mullyman – The Life, the Hood, the Streetz (Baltimore M.C.)

8 Billie Holiday – Fine and Mellow (although Lady Day was born in Philly, she lived for a while in Baltimore when she was young)

Kismetic Mix 31 – Oy Vey! Edition – Like a Fiery Kite

•December 9, 2012 • Leave a Comment

A mix of Jewish rock stars is easy enough but as we light the menorah tonight I think of those rock and rollers who you may or may not have known are of the Hebrew persuasion.

KM 31 Playlist 29:13

1 The Clash – Police on My Back – Mick Jones

2 Jamiroquai – Feels Just Like It Should – Jay Kay

3 Sleater-Kinney – I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone – Carrie Brownstein and Janet Weiss.

4 The Flamingos – I Only Have Eyes for You – Jake and Zeke Carey, Paul Wilson, and Johnny Carter…yes, Black Hebrew Israelites!

5 T. Rex – Electric Slim & The Factory Hen – Marc Bolan, born with the far less glam name, Mark Feld.

6 The Band – Chest Fever – Jaime Robert Klegerman aka Robbie Robertson.

7 Richard Hell & The Voidoids – Love Comes in Spurts – Richard Lester Myers just doesn’t roll off the tongue very well, does it?

8 Marianne Faithfull – Why D’Ya Do It?

Kismetic Mix 30 – Trainspotting Edition – Gonna Board!

•November 24, 2012 • 1 Comment

My good friend, Sreedhar Yedavalli, over at Trainspotting Chicago, posts daily observations and flights of fancy, all to the locomotive rhythms of the Toddling Town’s commuter system. You should check it out.

In the meantime, whittling down a mix to eight songs was a challenge. Trains have always been a popular motif in music. This is just a small sample. OK, I pushed the envelope with Sonic Youth. Chalk it up to “mixer’s license.”

You can trace the line from Leadbelly to Aerosmith here.

And I had to throw in a gem from my ole buddies in Steeplejack. Sounds real nice coming out of “Midnight Train.”

KM 30 Playlist 30:27

1 Leadbelly – Linin’ Track

2 The Rolling Stones – Silver Train

3 Nas f/ Large Professor – Loco-Motive

4 The Cure – Jumping Someone Else’s Train

5 Sonic Youth – Pink Steam

6 Goldfrapp – Train

7 Gladys Knight & The Pips – Midnight Train to Georgia

8 Steeplejack – Southbound

Kismetic Mix 29 – Thanksgiving Day Edition – I Wanna Thank You

•November 21, 2012 • 1 Comment

It’s weird for me to be the healthy one. Both Laura and Minnie have the Thanksgiving Crud. But it’s a valuable reminder (not that I need a holiday to remind me of anything) of how grateful I am to be alive and kicking.

And while she wouldn’t agree with me, I have put Laura through a little bit of hell. I won’t go into all the tiresome details (a lot of you know them already) but let’s put it this way: In the Twin Cities there are quite a few cardiologists, hematologists, oncologists, and gastroenterologists who are pretty impressed that I’m doing as well as I am.

There is no doubt whatsoever that medical intervention has kept me breathing, but it’s my support system (family and friends) who have kept me alive. So, this Thanksgiving I’m thankful for Laura Wolovitch because I simply would not be here without her.

Happiness and good health for all of you. And a kick-ass mix, too!

KM 29 Playlist 27:14

1 Neko Case – Thanks a Lot

2 Led Zeppelin – Thank You

3 Murs & 9th Wonder – Love & Appreciate

4 Talking Heads – Thank You for Sending Me an Angel

5 Massive Attack – Be Thankful for What You Got

6 Beastie Boys – Gratitude

7 Sam & Dave – I Thank You

8 Fatboy Slim – Praise You